26 Adar Alef 5774
Eight and a half years ago, the settler public got a big wake-up call when ten thousand Jews were uprooted and expelled from their homes by force by the Israeli government. I don't think the question of "why?" was ever properly addressed. When the dust settled down, everyone went back to sleep.
Today, the yeshivah public just got their own wake-up call when a law was proposed to criminalize yeshivah students who refuse to leave their learning to serve in the army. Let us hope that people will stay awake this time, because the Israeli government is getting ready for Expulsion II.
Rabbi Mendel Kessin recently gave a shiur in which he said that "the Erev Rav have no power of their own" so the power they've been given to come against the Chareidi tzibur has come ultimately from Hashem and why? - "Because there is a kitrug against them in Shamayim."
Obviously then, there was also a kitrug - an accusation - against the settlers by which Hashem allowed the deed to be done. We have to try to figure out the reasons so we can do the proper teshuvah, make amends and progress towards redemption.
I maintained from the very beginning that the expulsion from Gush Katif happened because these people specialized in the mitzvah of yishuv ha'aretz, but it was only half done. There are two parts to it:
“You shall (1) possess it and you shall (2) dwell therein.” (Devarim, 11:31)
According to the Ramban: “We were commanded to (1) take possession of the Land that God, may He be blessed, gave to our forefathers, Avraham, Yitzchak, and Yaakov; and (2) we must not leave it in the hands of any other nation or let it remain desolate” (Addendum to Rambam’sSefer HaMitzvot, Positive Commandment 4).
If you are in any doubt as to what the mitzvah fully entails, I suggest you read Sefer Yehoshua. Granted that we are not today in the same position with the same power and license to act on the mitzvah, but we are all of us obligated in two ways: 1) we must always be ready and willing to STATE the truth of these matters, even if we can't ACT on it right now, and 2) we must always be ready and willing to do whatever IS in our power to do to bring it about. This is our minimal responsibility and I have to tell you, we've seen with our own eyes and felt with our own hearts and souls how Hashem feels about half measures!! (Read also Sefer Haggai.)
The people went to settle the land in Gush Katif, but they were not ready to conquer it from the enemy - even in their own minds. How many interviews did I hear where they justified their presence in Aza to the Israeli public by emphasizing mutual understanding and friendships with their Arab neighbors; how they attended each others simchas and drank coffee together. Even some years after the expulsion, when missiles were raining down from the previously Jewish areas of Aza, a self-identified national religious woman from Sederot had admittedly learned absolutely nothing. She told a radio interviewer that if the Arabs would simply stop attacking, they could all go back to the prior situation of "mutual respect and peaceful coexistence."
Back to the current situation. Might we extrapolate from the foregoing and discover the accusation in Shamayim against the Chareidim? I'll tell you what comes to my mind and you decide for yourself.
The yeshivah public specializes in the mitzvah of limud Torah. The Gemara in Yevamot 109b says "Whoever says 'all I have is Torah (without deeds), doesn't have Torah!"
At Har Sinai, we all stood together and said "na'aseh v'nishma" - we will (1) do and we will (2) hear. This is another two-part mitzvah in which, I believe, HALF is being severely neglected - Torah learning must result in Torah deeds and I'm not talking just about bein adam v'chavero, but the deeds that Torah demands with regard to the Land of Israel and the Beit Hamikdash.
And it's not enough just to ensure that Chareidi children are saved from the spiritual ravages of the secular army and the secular education system. We have an obligation to fight for the rights of EVERY pure Jewish neshamah. It's enough of - they'll have their world and we'll remain safely in ours. Hashem despises this Torah which has no practical implications for the future of all His children.
Sure, maybe in the beginning, Chareidi numbers were too small to make much of an impact, so Hashem, so to speak gave them a pass, but once they began to wield considerable political power, did they think to use that power for the betterment of all Jews in the Land of Israel or only for their own tzibur. Isn't this exactly the basis upon which the Erev Rav have been able to attack the Chareidi tzibur - that they sit back and let other Jews put themselves at risk to protect them and their way of life?
If there were not some truth to it, it wouldn't work. It's time for serious soul searching. We have to stop excusing ourselves by saying that we do not have the power at this time to expel the Arab enemy or to rebuild the Beit Hamikdash or to make Torah the Law of the Land. Just ask yourselves honestly...
WOULD I, IF I COULD?
The only way out of this mess is to get with the program and be prepared mentally, spiritually and physically to carry out Hashem's complete will without doubt or hesitation. Because, it is obvious now, that there is not much time left.
Were the Erev Rav regime to continue on their path, Israel would be destroyed. However - thank God! - now that they have stripped themselves of all the merit they've been accruing from supporting yeshivah bachurim and avreichim and their families and now that they have reversed the merit they accrued from settling and building the land of Israel by tearing it down and giving it to our enemies, they are truly and thankfully on their way down and out.
That means, Mashiach is here and just waiting to be revealed and why does he wait? Again, for two reasons: 1) for the merit of the Erev Rav to be used up, and 2) for the greatest number of Jews possible to get with Hashem's program for redemption. You'll recall that "doubt" and "Amalek" have the same gematria. Anyone who remains in doubt about the rightness and justness and simple Torah basis for the actions Mashiach will take, will be removed from this world. Mashiach is not coming to fight with Jews over the program and process of the redemption.
This is the war for hearts and minds. No more half-measures. Hashem wants and deserves 100% from us and He will have it. It's time once again for "na'aseh v'nishma." When the day for action arrives, Mashiach will shout "Mi l'Hashem elai!" and like the Cohanim of old, we will rush to him, without hesitation and without stumbling and the final victory will be ours!